11 July 2018
11 July 2018
HOK, Los Angeles: Creative, Egalitarian, Agile.
The Culture of Practice
HOK’s mission is to deliver exceptional design ideas and solutions for its clients through the creative blending of human need, environmental stewardship, value creation, science and art. The Los Angeles office has been part of HOK’s United States network since 1983.
The 24,000 square foot warehouse in Culver City, once prop storage for Sony Studios, is big, open and airy, housing 85 workstations in an area punctuated by skylights that provide plenty of light. Offices have been transformed into huddle rooms, there’s a ‘graffiti wall’ for viewing the creative process and people can easily gather in an open setting around the foam bleachers.
Organised into three groups, the interiors team sit at the far east end with the product design group, accounting and human resources department in the centre and the architects at the far west end of the space.
Local landmark Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook serves as a popular spot for stair climbing exercise, while ‘culture sync’ meetings at the nearby Herman Miller showroom provide an off-site space in which to soak up design history. On Friday afternoons, movies are shown in the largest conference room, while Wednesday nights are when vendors visit the space to show their wares in an informal setting, providing another opportunity for people who wouldn’t necessarily be working on the same projects to bond.
Beyond work, the firm has a community outreach initiative called ‘HOK Impact’ which includes the renovation of the Culver City grammar school playground and the pro bono design of a teen rescue centre for the Gay and Lesbian Association in West Hollywood.
One of the defining characteristics of the firm is its collegial atmosphere with a strong sense of camaraderie and esprit de corps, as well as commitment and respect for each other. “The people here are kind, supportive, helpful and talented. People want to work at a place like this,” says Design Director Clay Pendergrast.
Author: Kat Hall, Marketing Assistant, Bespoke Careers